Local musician planning concert to benefit Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission


By Ron Giofu


The music of Rick Rock is known throughout Amherstburg and surrounding areas and he will be using his music to give back to a local charity Feb. 2.

Rockworld and Showtime Productions will be presenting the “Simply Queen” live tribute concert at the Caboto Club in Windsor as a fundraiser for the Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission. Rock is one of the promoters of the concert and will be performing as Freddie Mercury at the show.

“I have been performing for Amherstburg’s food mission for many years, as a volunteer musician for their events such as their Christmas volunteer dinner and any function (vice president) Shirley (Hitchcock) and (president) Tim (McAllister) asked for help with.”

The Simply Queen band will be performing a benefit concert for the Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission Feb. 2 at the Caboto Club in Windsor. (Photo courtesy of

Rock said he lives in Amherstburg and while other missions around the region get more assistance, he feels the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission “gets left out” in large, regional fundraisers.

The Simply Queen band will be performing a benefit concert for the Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission Feb. 2 at the Caboto Club in Windsor. (Photo courtesy of

“Even though the concert is in Windsor, I want to take care of the mission in Amherstburg,” said Rock. “I have a special place in my heart for Amherstburg and for the people here. I love Amherstburg. I feel it’s the pearl of Essex County.”

Between ticket sales, a silent auction and any further donations, Rock is hopeful of raising anywhere from $1,500 to $3,000 for the mission. Donations of canned goods and non-perishable food items will also be welcome.

Other members of the Simply Queen band include Windsor-Essex County musicians Mitch Taylor on bass and Phil Charette on drums plus other musicians from the Toronto area.

According to Rock: “Simply Queen performs all the iconic songs that made Queen one of the most legendary rock bands of all time, and faithfully recreates the grand scope of Queen’s live shows, both musically and visually, with attention to detail capturing the amazing live Queen experience that filled stadiums around the world.  No backing tracks – it’s all live, and ‘Guaranteed to Blow Your Mind!’”

Rock said if they get 400-500 people at the concert, “we’re happy,” but clearly wouldn’t mind if they topped that.

“If we get more, that would be dandy,” he said.

Simply Queen performed a concert last year that benefitted the Canadian Diabetes Association Windsor District and Rock said that drew over 700 people.

The Simply Queen band will be performing a benefit concert for the Amherstburg Food & Fellowship Mission Feb. 2 at the Caboto Club in Windsor. (Photo courtesy of

Doors open at 7 p.m. and the show is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. The Caboto Club is located at 2175 Parent Ave. in Windsor, at the intersection of Tecumseh Road East.

Advance tickets are $20 and are available online thru  or cash at the Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission as well as the Bod-E-Tone Kiosk at Central Mall in Windsor. If tickets don’t sell out by the Feb. 2 show date, tickets will be available at the door for $30.

If there are businesses or individuals that wish to donate cash or a door prize, please contact Rock by phone at 519-567-7520 or by e-mail at

The Amherstburg Food and Fellowship Mission also has a newly designed website, found at The site is geared towards providing information on what the mission needs most, any upcoming events, support received from the community and other items of community interest.

St. Clement Parish fundraising concert raises over $10,000


By Jolene Perron


To preserve St. Clement Church’s crumbling mortar, the choir took upon themselves to raise money through a one-time concert.

Since 1880, the parish in McGregor has offered Holy Mass for its parishioners. As the congregation grew, the construction of the present church took place in 1903. According to the dioceses of London website, St. Clement’s exterior walls are constructed of stone blocks which they said are likely from the local quarry.

“The mortar itself is crumbling so we need to have it replaced and that’s costing us quite a bit of money so we’re doing everything we can to fundraise through different events,” explained choir leader Annette Barron.

Barron explained that she suggested a concert last spring after many inquiries from parishioners about the choir recording a CD. Due to copyright, a CD wasn’t doable, however a concert was the next best option. She took the songs they normally do, and added harmonies and “rejigged” the songs to create a repertoire for the choir to entertain the parishioners.

“We took it five steps further than they are normally used to, and they hated me for it at the beginning but they got whipped into shape and they sound awesome now,” said Barron.

A group of choir singers from St. Clements Parish performed a concert recently to raise money for repairs to the mortar, which is currently crumbling away.

Barron has been in the choir since 1990. She explained they sing every week at mass all year-round, as well as at special masses for holidays such as Christmas and Easter. Typically they only hold formal practices as needed, as they are all volunteers.

The response and support from the parish Barron said, has been overwhelming. From parishioners volunteering their time to help sell tickets, put up flyers, promote the concert and actually work the event taking ticket money and donations, Barron said they “responded like gang busters,” ready to help. A crew of them even came out the evening prior to set up a platform on the altar to accommodate the choir.

With corporate sponsors, the choir raised $10,000 and counting with people still coming in with donations. They are continuing to raise money through the Columbian Hall in McGregor, which also had a sold out dinner over that same weekend with an attendance of more than 300 people.

For those wishing to make further donations, they should contact St. Clement Church at during office hours, Tuesday to Thursday 10 a.m.-3 p.m. or at 519-726-5127.

“I’m extremely happy that I can do something to actually help contribute to the continuity of our church,” said Barron. “A lot of churches, parishes kind of die out but this one, it’s a small parish but we seem to remain vibrant and strong and viable, that makes it hard to close it up. We always seem to pull through no matter what comes out way with the building.”




Benefit concert being held for infant with Apert Syndrome


By Ron Giofu

A benefit concert is being held for a local girl born with a rare developmental syndrome.

The benefit concert entitled “Not So Silent Night” will be held Friday night at the Kordazone Theatre in Windsor but the proceeds will benefit the Mickle family, a local family who has a baby with Apert Syndrome.    Baby Christina, born July 29 with twin brother William, has a syndrome which her aunt Rebecca said only impacts one out of every 200,000 babies.

Christina Mickle (above) was born July 29 with Apert Syndrome. A benefit concert will be held Friday night in Windsor. (Submitted photo)

Christina Mickle (above) was born July 29 with Apert Syndrome. A benefit concert will be held Friday night in Windsor. (Submitted photo)

“It’s a pretty rare syndrome,” said Rebecca. “It was a shock for everyone.”

Christina’s fingers and toes are fused and she may not have all of her digit bones.  Surgery will be needed on her hands but her hands are not expected to be 100 per cent. The first surgery is scheduled for when she is six-months-old.

The family says her cranial bones are fused together but still growing causing her forehead to protrude. Christina also suffers from hearing loss and the symptoms of hydrocephalus. The baby is also expected to undergo surgery on her cranium and may need additional corrective surgeries between the ages of 4-12.

Baby Christina may need anywhere from 20-60 surgeries in her lifetime. The concert will help offset some of the family’s costs, Rebecca said.

Baby Christina was born to Allen Mickle Jr. and Tracy Mickle, with Allen being from Amherstburg. The family has five children in all and Rebecca said her brother and his family have “a lot on their plates.”

To add to the family’s concerns, Allen lost his job since the twins were born and the family is in the process of moving homes and switching doctors.

For more information please visit The GoFundMe page is aimed at generating $50,000 for the family.

The Mickle Family (Submitted photo)

The Mickle Family (Submitted photo)

Tickets for the concert are a $10 minimum donation and more information can be had by calling Rebecca at 519-736-7514 or Chris Chumko at 519-736-9456. The concert will feature Amherstburg and Windsor musicians including Allen Levack, Claudio Morle, Greg L. Girty, Karly Mendler, Jenn Ranjit-Fortais and Rebecca herself. There will also be baked goods available for sale.

“I thought this would be an amazing way to listen to gorgeous music and help out someone in need,” said Rebecca.

The Kordazone Theatre is located at 2520 Seminole St. in Windsor. Friday night’s concert starts at 7 p.m.